SJC Expands  Pure Emergency Exception to Animals in  Duncan

SJC Expands Pure Emergency Exception to Animals in Duncan

On April 11, 2014, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court (SJC) extended the pure-emergency exception to allow police officers and other public officials to enter a home without first obtaining a warrant “to render emergency assistance to animals.” The Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution and Article 14 of the Massachusetts Declaration of Rights each require a judicial determination of probable cause prior to a government intrusion into an individual’s dwelling. Nevertheless, there are a number of exceptions to this requirement. One such exception “permits the police to enter a home without a warrant when

[...]

D.C. Circuit in Verizon Strikes FCC’s “Net Neutrality” Rules  for Broadband Providers

D.C. Circuit in Verizon Strikes FCC’s “Net Neutrality” Rules for Broadband Providers

In Verizon v. FCC, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, for the second time in four years, reviewed the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) authority to impose “net neutrality” rules on broadband service providers’ network management practices.

[...]

SJC Requires Search Warrants To Obtain Defendants’ Cellular Site Location Information in Augustine

SJC Requires Search Warrants To Obtain Defendants’ Cellular Site Location Information in Augustine

The right for a person to be free in his or her body, effects, and property from governmental intrusion serves as the bedrock of the Bill of Rights, as well as the Commonwealth of Massachusetts’s Declaration of Rights.

[...]

SJC in Canty Addresses Police Officer Testimony at OUI Trials

SJC in Canty Addresses Police Officer Testimony at OUI Trials

Police officer testimony during OUI (operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol) trials in Massachusetts often reads like a script from an all too familiar play, with indicators of alcohol intoxication largely the same across police reports and police officer testimony. Police reports are almost certain to include phrases such as, “odor of alcohol on the [driver’s] breath” and “eyes were bloodshot.”

[...]

Providing Context:   New Hampshire Supreme Court Allows Recording of Officer’s “Motive to Lie” Statement into Evidence

Providing Context: New Hampshire Supreme Court Allows Recording of Officer’s “Motive to Lie” Statement into Evidence

Ernest Willis was convicted of various sexual assault offenses that occurred in 1997. He appealed those convictions in State v. Willis, by arguing that the court erred in admitting certain portions of a police interrogation recording into evidence. The conviction arose from Willis’s interactions with a fifteen-year-old girl who attended his church.

[...]

Back It Up:  Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Holds First Amendment and Common-Law Rights of Access to Criminal Trial Do Not Extend to Backup Room Recording

Back It Up: Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Holds First Amendment and Common-Law Rights of Access to Criminal Trial Do Not Extend to Backup Room Recording

In Commonwealth v. Winfield, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court (SJC), in a matter of first impression, held that the First Amendment right of access to a criminal trial—as applied to the states through the Fourteenth Amendment—and the common-law right of access to judicial records did not extend to a backup room recording that was not the official record of the trial.

[...]

After Online Equity:  De-Crowding and Accommodating Venture Capital

After Online Equity: De-Crowding and Accommodating Venture Capital

On October 23, 2013, the SEC released its proposed equity crowdfunding rules. The proposed rules, which come over a year and a half after the Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act (JOBS Act) was signed into law, outline the details of how the legislation’s new crowdfunding provisions will function. While many have lauded the new rules as potentially useful for capital-seeking startup companies, this new financing mechanism has two serious limitations.

[...]


Latest Print Edition

PdfPDF by Matt C Pinsker | June-3-2014 |

Under Article 66(c) of the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ), the military’s courts of criminal appeals have the unusual appellate power to conduct a de novo review of a trial court’s findings of fact. Congress gave the military’s appellate courts their unique fact-finding powers in 1950 because under the original UCMJ, special and general courts-martial were highly unprofessional proceedings and extremely susceptible to command influence, thereby creating the risk of unjustly convicting and harshly sentencing servicemembers. Originally, there were not even military judges presiding at summary courts-martial. Instead, a senior line officer untrained in the law was designated president of the panel and was responsible for deciding questions of law, such as the admissibility of evidence. The panel president [...]

PdfPDF by Stephen Sewalk | June-3-2014 |

Cap-and-trade is a failed policy. Under the Kyoto Protocol, global emissions have continued to increase and the European Union Emissions Trading System (EU ETS) price collapsed due to hot air and over allocation of emissions. The time has come to abandon cap-and-trade as a method or means of potentially reducing global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. As such, the European Union Twenty-Seven (EU-27) should abandon the EU ETS and adopt a carbon tax with reinvestment (CTR), leading the way for the United Kingdom, United States, and China to also adopt this strategy. Together, the EU-27, United Kingdom, United States, and China account for 57% of total carbon-dioxide emissions, not including land use and deforestation. If these countries, which account for approximately [...]

PdfPDF by Anthony Gambale | June-2-2014 |

Due to the ambiguous language of the Fourth Amendment, courts have been unable to agree on a strict test as to what constitutes a reasonable search and seizure. For example, in United States v. Falso, the court held that evidence of child molestation, by itself, did not create probable cause for a search warrant for child pornography. In its reasoning, the court concluded that a crime involving the sexual abuse of a minor does not relate to child pornography. Therefore, officers lacked sufficient probable cause when executing the search warrant issued by the magistrate.   Likewise, in United States v. Hodson, the court held that evidence of child molestation, without more, was insufficient to create probable cause for a search [...]

PdfPDF by Matthew J. Smith | June-2-2014 |

The extraterritorial reach of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure’s (Federal Rules) evidence-gathering provisions has long been a source of tension in foreign relations. The world we live in is increasingly interconnected and litigation between parties subject to multiple sovereigns has become more commonplace. Often, the discovery provisions of the Federal Rules come into conflict with foreign laws, such as banking secrecy or blocking statutes. Under such a predicament, a litigant that operates both abroad and in the United States is placed in a catch-22: produce discovery in violation of foreign law (and be subject to liability) or refuse to produce discovery (and be subject to sanctions). These types of scenarios can arise in almost every context and implicate the [...]

PdfPDF by Ethan Z. Tieger | June-2-2014 |

For many Americans, the thought of providing any form of medical care to a convicted murderer is incomprehensible, a sentiment embodying the tenuous interplay between principles of morality and the rule of law. The reality is that prisoners throughout the United States frequently undergo various medical procedures to treat their health care needs, but for transsexual prisoners, the uphill battle to receive treatment, including hormone therapy and sex-reassignment surgery (SRS), has been plagued by the courts’ general resistance to recognize the severity of gender dysphoria. The Eighth Amendment has long been interpreted to afford a prisoner the right to receive adequate medical care and treatment for his or her serious medical needs. The Supreme Court has further explained that the [...]

PdfPDF by Josephine Unger | June-2-2014 |

New York City currently maintains one of the lowest crime rates among all major American metropolitan areas. Several decades ago, however, the urban hub of the Empire State found itself in peril as it experienced a devastating rise in violent crime. This upward trend persisted until the early-to-mid 1990s when statistics on crime began to indicate a change for the better. Crime rates in New York City continued to descend until the turn of the millennium when they stagnated, resulting in a plateau of reported crime, which continues to endure. The plummeting crime numbers coincided with an historic ascent in the number of stop and frisks performed by city police officers. The decline in urban crime and simultaneous rise in [...]

PdfPDF by Ian Bagley | June-1-2014 |

When the United States Congress passed the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) in 1977, its chief concern was deterring off-the-books bribes of foreign officials by domestic corporations. The FCPA authorized the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to issue new rules, including Rule 13b2-2, which imposes civil liability on corporate officers who mislead accountants concerning the corporation’s finances. In SEC v. Das, the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals addressed the issue of whether civil liability is present in cases where the corporate officer did not knowingly mislead. Splitting from the Ninth Circuit—the only other circuit court that addressed this issue directly—the Eighth Circuit rejected the proposed “knowingly” requirement, holding that a reasonableness standard shall apply in such cases.   Das concerned [...]


View Current & Past Print Volumes >